Coronavirus forces cancellation of Santa's annual sleigh tour of Doncaster
Santa’s annual sleigh tour of Doncaster has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The annual event, organised by locals Lions clubs and which sees Santa touring the streets and villages of Doncaster in the run-up to the festive season, has been axed because of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.
Doncaster Lions, Thorne Rural Lions and Went Valley Lions have all issued announcements cancelling this year’s tours.
Thorne Rural Lions said: “Our members have spent much of 2020 working on the sleigh ready for this year.
"Whilst we have explored every possibility to take the sleigh out this year it has been decided that it would not be safe for the public or our volunteers.
“We cover such a large area and we could not risk spreading the disease from one area to another.”
“It’s just one year, they’ll be many more. Hugely disappointing, not just for you but for us too. If people were to gather, we could be accused of encouraging it, which would be against Covid law. The journey around the district could be regarded as an ‘unnecessary journey’ and would be against Covid law. We could not risk a heavy fine.”
Doncaster Lions said: “With most of our volunteers being a similar age to Santa himself, we need to make sure we are match fit to raise money again in the future and bring happiness to much needed members of our community with our gestures.
“So this year, we have to stay at home, keep a safe distance and let Santa use his magic for that special day.”
And Went Valley Lions said: “It is with great sadness that Doncaster Went Valley Lions have to advise that as a direct consequence of the current coronavirus pandemic,we will be unable to help Santa visit our area this year.
"We sincerely hope that 2021 will be better and we will see everyone then. Please stay safe, be positive and test negative.”
Earlier this month, Coca Cola announced that its ‘Holidays Are Coming’ Christmas truck tour, which has visited Doncaster in previous years, was also being shelved because of the pandemic.